Colin P. McGuire holds a PhD in Ethnomusicology and an MA in Electroacoustic Composition from York University, as well as a Graduate Diploma in Asian Studies from the York Centre for Asian Research. Previously, McGuire was an IRC Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Music at University College Cork, Ireland, and he remains an External Associate at the York Centre for Asian Research. Writ large, his academic work centres on the locus of music and body. He is particularly interested in how being attentive to choreomusical connections between movement and sound can contribute to understandings of being-in-the-world, relationships, values, and beliefs.

Currently, McGuire’s research focuses on music and martial arts, examining transmission processes, tradition/legacy, body-experience, community/identity, and heroic display. Between 2008 and 2016, he conducted participant observation and performance ethnography fieldwork on Chinese kung fu, the lion dance ritual, and percussion music at Toronto, Canada’s Hong Luck Kung Fu Club. Before beginning this research, McGuire earned a teacher’s rank in Sum Nung Wing Chun kung fu under Sifu Henry Lo. His latest research project, Shillelagh Studies, investigates the place of music in 19th-century Irish faction fighting, as well as its echoes down to the post-2000 revival of shillelagh martial arts. Through investigations of intertextual meanings, transnational identity construction, and resistance to oppression, McGuire contributes to wider discussions of embodiment and diaspora.

As a composer and sound artist, McGuire has worked with dancers and choreographers like the Little Pear Garden Dance Company and Ballet Creole’s Patrick Parson. Under the DJ/producer pseudonym Ronin E-Ville, his eclectic electronic dance music (EDM) has been in the Top 20 of Canada’s !Earshot radio charts for electronica and has also been licensed to the Gemini Award-winning TV show Departures.


Research & Teaching Interests


Music & Martial Arts; Drumming in Chinese Kung Fu & Lion Dance; Martial Arts Film Music; Music & Identity; Music & Diaspora; Music & Embodiment; Ethnographic Methods; Intertextual Discourse Analysis; Phenomenology; Interdisciplinary Research; World Musics; North American Popular Musics (Rock, Hip Hop, & EDM); Jazz & Blues

Music Technology

DJ Culture; Consumers as DJs; Technoculture; Music Technology & Performance; Aesthetics & Ethics of Sampling; Ontology of Digital Audio; Intersections of Art & Popular Musics; Interdisciplinary Collaboration; Electroacoustic & Post-Acousmatic Music; Sound Art